Which Rokkor?

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by WestOkid, Oct 11, 2014.

  1. WestOkid

    WestOkid TalkEmount All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 25, 2014
    New Jersey, USA
    I am not a big manual guy except for landscape work, but I really want a faster portrait/normal than the f/1.8 on native lenses. I am thinking 50-58mm and <= f/1.4 would suffice.

    I have admired the dreamy bokeh and the film-like rendering of the Rokkors many of you use. If I am trying to stay under $100, what are some suggestions?

    Thanks in advance for your help.
  2. mashiro2004

    mashiro2004 TalkEmount Regular

    Oct 5, 2014
    Aosta Valley - Italy
    Hi, if you want to stay under 100$ is very difficult to find a rokkor fast lens.... You can try to find Cosina or rebranded 55 1.4. Personally i have Super Carenar 55 1.4, it's a beautifull fast and cheap lens, it's a Cosina rebranded.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. WestOkid

    WestOkid TalkEmount All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 25, 2014
    New Jersey, USA
    I guess I was mislead or misunderstood. I was always under the impression many of the legacy Minolta lenses could be had for <100. Are these just bad copies?
  4. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Gary, no, you're right. You can easily get an MC 58 1.4 or an MD 50 1.4 for $100 or less. I have the latter and absolutely love it for what I use it for (low/available light portraits) :) 
  5. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    You can find plenty around $100 ish in the 1.8-1.4 range.

    It is the name Rokkor that typically adds some extra price though.

    Just be dilligent and patient and you can find something.
  6. WestOkid

    WestOkid TalkEmount All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 25, 2014
    New Jersey, USA
    Thanks Nick, Dave,

    So I really don't know much about buying these things. I was looking for some direction. I really like the bokeh on the Minolta MC Rokkor-PF 58/1.4. I see a thread here for that lens. I don't see an MD thread. Is the MC much different from the MD? In what way?
    Also I hear you guys talking about Keh and ebay. Is there a particular seller to use or avoid?
  7. Jefenator

    Jefenator TalkEmount Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Nov 23, 2012
    Oregon, USA
    I'm a big fan of my MC Rokkor-PG 50/1.4, which I found at a junk shop for $15. Favorite BOKEH, best performance at f/2 out of any nifty fifty I've tried.

    Okay, so that was a "score" but I think there should be plenty of Minolta MD mount 1:1.4 lenses to be found on eBay for under $100. (Unless things have changed rather drastically since I was last scoping out the market, a couple of months ago.)

    IME in this mount not all Rokkors are gems and not all non-Rokkors are dogs. Apart from the one I mentioned above, what I've found is:

    35/2.8 W.Rokkor-X great little performer, surprisingly sharp from wide open. $60
    45/2 Rokkor was not very good. $25
    50/2 Rokkor pretty good in the middle wide open but has corner issues for landscapes. $25
    MD 50/1.4 (not Rokkor) pretty weak at wider apertures but stops down just fine and is light and compact. $60
    MD 85/2 (not Rokkor) freaking awesome, usable wide open, great form f/2.8, light and compact for a fast tele. $300
    • Like Like x 2
  8. fractal

    fractal TalkEmount Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jun 17, 2014
    Southeastern PA
    I purchased a 50mm 1.4 Rokkor in very good condition on ebay for $60.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Can't speak for the other variations, no first hand experience since I never own them (so what I'd tell you is what you can read from the internet), but my MD Rokkor 50 1.4 is a great lens that I frequently use even wide open. Renders beautiful colors! Mine is the 1977 MD-II version with the 55mm filter thread. I bought it in mint condition for no more than 50euro.
    If you want first hand comparison between the many variations, then Ad here is your guy ;)  There are also some great sites about Minolta lenses on the web :) 
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Dan Euritt

    Dan Euritt TalkEmount Regular

    Jan 11, 2014
    fwiw, if you need a legacy 50mm that's sharp at f/1.4, the fdn 50/1.4 is going to be hard to beat.

    not sure if it has that minolta "look", tho :frown:

    we need multiple 50s, to cover all occasions :D 
    • Like Like x 1
  11. jai

    jai TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Feb 4, 2013
    The reason you want a F1.4 version is it has an F2 stop. You'll be using that a lot. The Minolta Rokkor F1.7 is not very sharp wide open, and the next stop down is F2.8.

    To choose between 50 and 58, I would say the 58 has the smoother lovelier Bokeh but the 50 is a bit sharper and has slightly better contrast.

    If what you really want is a 50mm equivalent on APSC, the 35mm F2.8 is a great little lens.
    • Like Like x 2
  12. WestOkid

    WestOkid TalkEmount All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jan 25, 2014
    New Jersey, USA
    Thanks Jai - I need 50+mm f/1.4 because it has to be fast and a portrait. The 35 f/2.8 is neither. If I had the money I would go f/1.2. Based on what you and everyone else is saying, I am leaning towards 58 because if I am going to get a legacy lens, I want the bokeh and the analog-like rendering to be obvious. If I want sharp, I can just use my SEL50.
  13. jai

    jai TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Feb 4, 2013
    Yep, sounds like you know what you want.

    I like the 50, but I will admit the Bokeh can sometimes look a little harsh.

    9053400082_0275ed76c3_b. DSC04210 by Jai Sbr, on Flickr

    Actually though, like in that pic above, I kind of like it that way.
    • Like Like x 2
  14. NkedFatWhiteGuy

    NkedFatWhiteGuy TalkEmount Veteran

    Oct 28, 2013
    Portland, Oregon
    I absolutely love my MC 58 1.4! This is probably my favorite legacy, manual lens. I found my copy at a local camera shop that deals with older equipment. The lens had therefore been professionally serviced and cleaned before I bought it. I paid $90 for mine earlier this year, which is exactly what they were asking for it.

    Good luck and let us know what you decide on!
    • Like Like x 1
  15. robfactory

    robfactory TalkEmount Regular

    Aug 23, 2014
    Go for the Minolta 58mm f1.4 and the Canon 50mm f1.4 ssc. You can get them on eBay for about $50.
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Hawkman

    Hawkman TalkEmount All-Pro

    Sep 10, 2013
    Virginia, USA
    I have had very good experiences with KEH.com. All but one of my MC/MD mount lenses have come from them. Their rating system for the condition of lenses is rock solid reliable in my experience. I've had no complaints with any EX, EX+, or LN- lens I've purchased from them. In fact, I think their system seems to have become the de facto standard in the used market. Even eBay sellers try to use it, though not always as accurately (my one eBay sourced lens, the MD 35-70/3.5, was rated as something like an EX+, but upon receipt I would have called it more like a BGN - it was dirtier and looser than any KEH-sourced EX condition item I have).

    I have noticed that the prices on Minolta MC/MD mount lenses at KEH seem to be going up a lot. I got my EX condition MC 50/1.4 six months ago for about $69, whereas those seem to be hovering around $90 or more now. I suppose supply and demand is to blame there. Limited supply and rising demand as more and more folks discover the magic of legacy lenses on Sony's mirrorless cameras.

    Sent from TalkEmount app on iPad
    • Like Like x 1
  17. rick79

    rick79 New to TalkEmount

    Oct 20, 2014
    Somewhere in Italy
    The MD Rokkor 50/1.7 is really cheap and can deliver some great portraits
    • Like Like x 1
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